Saturday Night Live- Praise & Worship And Two For Fun

Several of the songs today are from videos my friend Jim sends me.  Malcolm and Alwyn goes back three decades but the song is beautiful.  I decided to have fun with the last two.  I hope you enjoy!  Allan

Play List

1.  You Made A Place For Me-  Matt Gilman

2.  I Will Run To You-  Hillsong

3.  Everlasting God (Strength Will Rise)-  Chris Tomlin

4.  My Everything-  Vineyard Music

5.  Fix You-  Coldplay

6.  Lifeline-  Brooke Fraser

7.  Mighty To Save-  Andreana Arganda

8.  Eden-  Annie Moses Band

9.  How Great Thou Art-  Mahalia Jackson

10.  The World Needs Jesus-  Malcolm & Alwyn

11.  Evolution Of Wedding Dance-  At the 1:15 point this becomes a classic!!

12.  Taxman-  The Beatles    (In light of the recent election!!)

Prayer Requests & Praise Reports- January 30th

16  Jesus, however, called for them and said, Let the little children come to me, and stop keeping them away. For the kingdom of God belongs to people like these.

Luk 18:16 Jesus, however, called for them and said, "Let the little children come to me, and stop keeping them away. For the kingdom of God belongs to people like these.

Matthew 11:28  Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Matthew 11:29  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
Matthew 11:30  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

Note-  This last week has been a reality check for me.  There are solid Christians who are or who have battled with thoughts of suicide and are in the deep pit of depression.  I understand this is not a comfortable topic for many but it is one we can not shy away from.

We are here to encourage one another and to provide as much in the way of resources as possible.  Above all, we are called to pray.  Christians who are suffering along these lines need our compassion and what understanding we have.  People who come and share these things are taking a huge step in making their struggles public.

All I ask is that we all respond in a spirit of love and compassion.  This is not a place for tough love!  As we struggle to find the right words to share with the hurting there are bound to be misunderstandings and good intentions that aren’t communicated perfectly.

We are all ultimately flawed in that we are human and stuff happens.  Know that we are in this together.  I appreciate deeply all of the sharing that has taken place here.  My goal is to keep this as a safe place for the hurting to come and know they won’t be marginalized.  Thank you so much for striving to make that happen.  Allan

New Prayer Requests

needs_hope- Hi Allan,
I came across your website just now, and I think it might be what I need. I’ve been a Christian for about 5 years now, but in the last 6 months I’ve been dealing with an onslaught of depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts – mostly related to post truamatic stress. In that, I have lost sight of God, and feel like I can no longer trust Him. I’m not sure if I’m mad at Him, scared of Him, or some combination of the two. I am on the verge of walking away from Him altogether. Yet deep down inside, I know I need to turn back.
I would like to talk to you, or anyone else out there reading this, via email if at all possible. I need help. It’s really unlike me to reach out via the internet, but I’m nearing the end of my rope and not sure what else to do. Please shoot me an email if you can.
Thanks.

arlivon d ornoski- many people do not relise just how horriable exist, we have to,crawl thru at all times of our life..i have a dr.and medicene,i thought i was gettig better,but my husband,says i have not,,when i cant do what he told me to do ..he lets me know how useless i still am….yes i think of killing myself every dsy…so glad you got good help..god bless you..arla

anne-  Thank you Allan and Larry.
I am clinging to hope by a thread. The despair got so bad I too finally sought help. I am in my second month of medication with slight improvement finally starting. I am seeing a therapist FOUR hours a week to try and keep the despair somewhat manageable. I too have found reminding myself of my children and grandchildren prevents me from following through with my darkest thoughts. I am stable but not out of the woods yet.

I have found that well meaning believers pour salt on my pain by insisting that the joy of the Lord should be my strength, I should be able to do all things through Christ who strengthens me. The worst was recently when someone said I should be like Jesus who for the joy set before him endured the cross. That is the WORST thing to tell someone who is feeling like death is the only alternative they have.

I am able to work a little each day now but become exhausted and overwhelmed by even the tiniest fraction of what I was able to do before.

Thank you all for your encouragement, testimonies, honesty and making this a safe place to be honest.

Erunner-  We have a niece who is coming out of ten years suffering with Anorexia. She is now battling depression and would covet our prayers. She is a beautiful young Christian mother with a fantastic husband and two adorable young boys.

Past Prayer Requests

Rachel-  hey all. please keep me in your prayers. i’m pretty sure i’m in a major depression and i am under a lot of attack. it’s easy when i’m not thinking clearly. struggling with thoughts of being a failure, worthlessness, not having enough faith, no one like me, etc. also some thoughts for a permanent ’solution’ that isn’t really a solution. i know i can’t/won’t do that, but i still think about it a lot.

Dorci-  Could I please ask for prayer for healing and/or wisdom on who to see for daily headaches I have had for almost 3 years? I have seen 3 neurologists, tried many medications and have had many nerve blocks and nothing has helped.

Thank you so much.

Anne-  Wow, Nene! I am blown away. And greatly encouraged! My need to move has as much to do with broken family issues as my unemployment. The family issues date back over 30 years and it seemed there had been healing over the last 8 I was back in OC, but they have resurfaced with a literal vengence -(

So now, it is official. Barring any unforeseen circumstances I will be moving to Beaverton, OR around March/April depending on how long it takes me to sell or give away whatever won’t fit in my car and tie up some other loose ends.

Covet your prayers as although I am glad I have family to go to now that I am unemployed, (my brother and his wife), it will be hard being farther away from my kids and grandkids . However it will be a blessing to be out of my current situation and out from behind the Orange Curtain.

I especially need prayer regarding my depression and general anxiety disorder. Although in the long run this move will probably be therapeutic in removing me from a very painful and awkward situation, I need strength and a clear mind to do all the things necessary for the move.

Thank you all, but especially Allan for making this space available.

Erunner-  Our daughter just called asking for prayer for her boyfriend’s father. He is undergoing open heart surgery which has taken everyone by surprise. Thank you for praying.  UPDATE-  He seems to have tolerated the surgery well as they replaced a heart valve.

a mom- I have a child diagnosed with PTSD after being molested and this article will be very helpful.
The 3 points were excellent and I will make a copy for her to keep with her.
God bless you

Erunner- Cara is a friend I met recently on a blog for people with Diabetes. She suffers with Mental Illnesses and tried to take her own life thirteen years ago. She ended up in a coma and as a result has minor brain damage from having flat lined twice.

“Plus the mental illness, plus all the physical illness. I have not worked for 12 years and I’ve lived in a AFH for 9 years as a cannot take care of myself.”

Please pray for Cara that God would work out His perfect will in her life and that she would know the peace He can provide during difficult times.

Dusty- Continued prayer for deep depression.

Erunner- The wife of our nephew has MS as I have shared in the past. This week they found another lesion on her brain. Please continue to pray.

Erunner- Please keep Jessica in your prayers. She is struggling with depression.

Okie Preacher- Please see my blog (okiepreacher.blogspot.com) for the latest update on Carolyn.

briwd200g- two things:

1. I have a job, and doesn’t look like we’ll get laid off anytime soon; so you can change that in the prayer list. But, it’s something that potentially could go down some day, and I need to prepare myself AHEAD of time.

2. I also need a second job (okay, that’s THREE things) )

kept-by-the-King- Thank you so much for praying, my brother sends me bizarre text messages about every other day…. he is so tormented….please pray for conversations I can have with him and that he would get the specific help he needs. Right now he is in a drug/alcohol rehab center …..

Linnea- Would you all pray for my friend, Rebecca, who is ending her marriage. Her 16 year old son has been diagnosed with primary pulmonary hypertension and she has a genetic predisposition for schizophrenia. Please pray that she get the help she needs, that her son be made whole and that their marriage be healed.

Anne – To overcome the “ feeling like it is my lack of faith or not being the “right” kind of Christian or believer that prevents my having “victory” or even immunity from depression. I also struggle with maintaining prayer when in the deepest parts of depression and grief.”

Nene - Prayer for her father to be saved and to come to a place of peace. Father and brother have been estranged 27 years.

Cash- Hello, friends. I am not doing well at all. Please pray for me and my family. Thanks.

Maryellen – Please pray for my daughter Jennifer and her daughter Avery, who was born with Down’s Syndrome. Strengthen the family as they enter into therapy for Avery that is very demanding. Pray also for their 2 and a half year old son during this time. Pray that the family will not be overwhelmed and that God will strengthen and guide them.

New Praise Reports

Dorci-  I just have a praise report that in almost 3 years of suffering with daily headaches I am finding some relief. I still have them every day, but I have times during the day when I don’t have one at all, and at night they are usually not as bad as they have been.

Thanks for your prayers! Please keep on praying, though.

PastPraise Reports

Nene-  Erunner, this is a HUGE praise. I asked for prayer here regarding my brother and dad. They have not spoken in 27 years or more, I lost count. It became a non issue, and one complete silence.

Today, my mom told me on the phone that my brother prayed for my dad last night at dinner. Besides this being so off the charts, my mom never even says his name. She also told me to tell my dad they love him.

Erunner!, I am stunned as the hand of God is covering this situation. With ll of my heart, whoever prayed for this situation, thank you, thank you.

I am in need of prayer as I haven’t told my dad yet. It is more than overwhelming to me. I am being honest….
Help me God with this.

Erunner-  Long but ultimately a blessed day today. My wife is home now and she’ll need a few days to recover. They isolated what type infection she had, gave her a last round IV of anti-biotics and sent us on our way.

Our daughter took my mother to her appointment today for her heart.  Her news was great. They believe her heart is just fine and told her she didn’t need to limit fluid intake as she had been told. It seems the pneumonia was the main problem and she is free to be as active as she wants. She is very, very, happy.

Two scary events that God allowed to turn out in a good way. Thanks for your prayers and my prayer is every need here would see God intervene over and above your expectations. God bless! Allan

Past Praise Reports

Mr Jesus Freak 4 Real-  Thanking God for the work He has done in the life of his wife who has suffered tremendously for several years.

Note….. As I compile this list I am eliminating those requests or praise reports that have been answered. I am also shortening the requests that are not new while trying to keep the essence of the request intact.

Larry Taylor On Despair, Suicide, And Hope

I was surprised to see this in the comments section a short time ago.  Reading it, I realized it needed to be an article because of the wisdom that is shared.  I pray God would use this to minister to those who are feeling despair and wrestling with thoughts of suicide.  Thank you Larry.   Allan

Despair is the worst of all human emotions and states of being. Despair is the absence of hope. It is depression so deep that the depressed person cannot see any way out, any hope of escaping the terrible, oppressive, dark pain that is pressing down on them. It affects everything they do and everyone around them.

I am not writing academically. I have been in the depths of despair. I know what it feels like to have no hope. Depression runs in my family, but when my son died by suicide when he was in high school, something snapped within my soul, and I was plunged into years of depression, panic attacks, and periods of despair.

I battle with it even now as I approach the anniversary of my son’s suicide. He killed himself on my birthday and was buried on Valentine’s Day.

People told me to trust God, but when you are in despair, you cannot trust, you have no coping mechanisms left. You are simply crushed. You can no more help yourself than a man physically crushed under a bolder could help himself.

People told me it would get better. I could not see how that was possible.

People told me to read my Bible. I tried. I could not.

People told me to fill my thoughts with good things. In despair, you know no good things; you know only despair. Your world is without light. It is hopeless.

People told me to exercise. I did not have the energy.

People told me to eat nutritiously. I did not care what I ate or even if I ate.

People said to go see a counselor. I was too ashamed. I thought good Christians didn’t need counselors.

Thoughts of suicide battered my mind like assaulting Huns. I had no ability to stop them. Suicide seemed like the only way to relieve the pain, to escape the darkness.

Then, I remembered my wife and how devastated she would be if I committed suicide.

I remembered my children and how I would be teaching them that suicide is an acceptable way out of problems.

I realized that the pain I felt came as a result of Elliott’s suicide, and I would be inflicting that same kind of pain on my family.

Eventually, I remembered God.

One day when I was standing at my son’s grave weeping, I somehow knew Jesus was there with me, his arm around my shoulder, weeping. I realized that Elliott’s death hurt God as much, no, more, than it hurt me.

I realized that suicide was a permanent and horrible solution to a temporary problem. Permanent because it results in death. Horrible because it hurts those who love us — God, spouses, children, parents, friends …

I saw an ad for an antidepressant, screwed up my courage, swallowed my pride, and made an appointment with a good psychiatrist. He diagnosed me and prescribed medicine that worked wonders in lifting me out of my despair.

I could cope. I could work. I could think. I could engage in therapy with a good counselor. The combination of continued medication and therapy set me on a path to normalcy.

I still struggle with depression occasionally, but never with despair.

I have hope.

This Is For Me… And Anyone Else Who Is Interested

Life has been hectic for me this last year.  God has been gracious to me and I’ve experienced  victories in my life which would be very minor to some but to me are huge.  I am thankful and confess I could be more thankful.

There has been a lot of pain in the lives of family members and others whom I love and care for greatly.  My struggles pale in comparison.  My heart literally is broken for those who are in so much pain right now.  And it brings tears to my eyes today.  I realize I can’t fix things.  But I know without a doubt that our God can.

I don’t understand His ways when loved ones die young and why so many struggle with so many other things.  I need to be able to let these things go and I have trouble doing it.

I knew I wanted to post something and I have chosen to post the following videos.  The last one is a song and I’m glad the screen is dark while the song plays.  If you choose to listen maybe you might close your eyes and let the song minister to you.  The other videos speak to me in personal and powerful ways.  They are worth viewing if you take the time.

Running a blog allows me to do something like this.  Maybe someone will be blessed.  Allan

The Link Between Anxiety And Sleep Disorders

by  Jerilyn Ross, M.A., L.I.C.S.W.
Monday, January 05, 2009

A good night’s sleep is important to good health. Many of us toss and turn or watch the clock when we can’t sleep for a night or two. But for some, a restless night is routine. More than 40 million Americans suffer from chronic, long-term sleep disorders, and an additional 20 million report sleeping problems occasionally, according to the National Institutes of Health. Stress and anxiety may cause sleeping problems or make existing problems worse. And having an anxiety disorder can only exacerbate the problem.

Click on this sentence to read the remainder of this article.

Eating Disorders And The Internet

I was shocked to read the contents of this article.  There are actually web-sites and other folks who encourage young people into believing that Anorexia is actually a good thing.  It’s more widespread than you might imagine.  This is well    Allan

This articled is reproduced in its entirety with permission from  the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders.

EATING DISORDERS AND THE INTERNET
A parental overview of deadly eating disorder hazards on the Internet.

How to identify them and what to do about them.
INTRODUCTION

Unfortunately many people still have the incorrect belief that eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa afflict only rich skinny white girls.

The reality is that eating disorders are deadly, chronic diseases that afflict more than 8 million Americans and cross all demographic, racial and ethnic boundaries. The vast majority of eating disorder sufferers are female.

More than 80% of sufferers exhibit their first symptoms prior to the age of twenty; some exhibit symptoms as early as the age of ten or younger.

At best the sufferer of an eating disorder can expect a fight for her/his life that can extend from one year to the lifespan of the sufferer. At worst, the scenario can be a long slow death.

WHY PARENTS SHOULD BE CONCERNED ABOUT ONLINE PRO EATING DISORDER LOCATIONS

The technology of the Internet allows the spread or information about how to mimic or to be anorexic with lightening-like rapidity. Unfortunately, many of the internet locations that advocate eating disorders as glamorous exhibit chameleon-like deviousness in disguising themselves as something other than the deadly dangerous information centers they are.

For example, the following warning appears on the front page of a popular pro-anorexia internet discussion group, Hard Core Anorexic (Name changed).

“For girls who are hardcore about being skinny.
But on the contrary,
We are not in anyway trying to encouraging ED!
But, we ARE Pro-Ana/Mia.
If you are trying to/are recover/recovered, don’t join.

It is on Internet locations such as Hard Core Anorexic and countless others, women separated by geography; age and lifestyle log in to share their struggles, goals, triumphs and failures in living a “pro-ana” lifestyle.

Anorexia, long the staple of after-school specials and public service announcements, may have fallen off the national radar screen, edged out by public panic about obesity.

Nevertheless with increasing access to new media, those with (or claiming to have) eating disorders have congregated outside of hospitals and clinics, crafting a thriving pro-eating disorder community on the internet.

While some of those with eating disorders seek and develop recovery oriented spaces online, others, such as the members of Hard Core Anorexic, specifically cultivate “pro-ana” communities.”

ANAD has been battling pro-ana/pro-mia web sites since 2001 trying to remove these deadly purveyors of information from the Internet and raise the awareness of parents that their children may be obtaining information that can jeopardize their health or eventually kill them.

The advance of Internet technology has seen a rapid increase in locations on the Internet because it has become increasing easier and  more appealing for teens to create their own online content.

According to research done for the PEW Internet & American Life project “57% of teens who use the Internet could be considered Content Creators. They have created a blog or web page, posted original artwork, photography, stories, or videos.”

It is estimated that as many as one in four adolescents are worried about their weight and they are either contemplating a diet or actually dieting.

The predominant majority of these dieters are female, but males are also included in lesser numbers. Many of these teens are preoccupied with shaping their bodies to match the anorexic looking figures that the fashion and advertising industries launch with authority.

The result is a thriving online subculture characterized by specific symbols, rituals and the identity of the wannarexic.

The confluence of teens who are often much more enthusiastic authors and readers of blogs than their adult counterparts and the subculture of wannarexics that is composed by teens create a fertile mixture for the spread of pro ana and pro mia information on the internet.

Teen bloggers, led by older girls, are a major part of this tech-savvy cohort. Teen bloggers are more fervent internet users than non-bloggers and have more experience with almost every online activity in the survey.

http://www.pewinternet.org/PPF/r/166/report_display.asp

WHO IS AND WHAT IS A WANNAREXIC?

A wannarexic could be your daughter or son.

THE URBAN DICTIONARY defines wannarexic as, “Someone who wishes or pretends they have an eating disorder or deliberately goes out of their way to make it look like they have anorexia.”

The prevalence of fashion and media pressure to be thin produces a result that means that there is better than a ten percent chance that if your child is an adolescent girl she binges or purges.

While these activities don’t necessarily mean the person exhibiting these conditions has  anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa, or binge eating disorder it does mean she/he is undertaking activities that can be harmful and lead to chronic and life threatening eating disorders.

Just a few unwanted results can include rotten teeth, and in adolescent females the interruption of menstrual cycles.

In an effort to meet her frequently unhealthy and unrealistically weight goal,  the wannarexic will go online to learn what laxatives, or diuretics or, extreme diets, or other unhealthy advice she can use to force her body to conform to the pressures of the body image with which the fashion and advertising industry constantly bombard her.

The wannarexic may even learn online what intestinal parasites are considered safe to take to lose weight.

Thus, countless otherwise healthy adolescent women become preoccupied with starving themselves and deifying anorexic role models rather than practicing good health and having healthy body images.

ANAD opts to keep the reference to the web site that discusses the use of internal parasites confidential in order not to provide this source to wannarexics and those suffering from eating disorders.

WHAT PARENTS SHOULD LOOK FOR: INDICATORS OF EATING DISORDERS

Being extremely thin is not necessarily an indication a child may be suffering from an eating disorder.

In fact, a downward and unexplained weight loss over a period of time could be a sign of other health problems.

If a child or teen has an unexplained downward loss of weight one should consider making appointment with the child’s medical doctor for a complete physical examination.  Also prior to the examination the parents should be on the lookout for other signs of eating disorders.

There are a range of symptoms and activities that the sufferer of eating disorders will exhibit.  Not all victims display all symptoms; abnormal weight loss, refusal to eat, except for tiny portions,binge eating,vomiting, abuse of laxatives, diuretics, emetics, diet pills, and other over the counter and prescription medications.

Denial of hunger, excessive exercise, distorted body image can lead young women to see themselves as fat even though they may be so thin they are emaciated, depression, preoccupation with food, absent or irregular menstruation, and rotted teeth from vomiting.

Many times the sufferer will deny she has a problem and attempt to disguise the symptoms.

It is not unexpected that sufferers learn how to hide their symptoms or weight loss online.

For example, the web site Tricks (name changed) provides 40 tips on anorexic and bulimic behavior, another 15 suggestions on how to hide one’s anorexic or bulimic behavior, how to erase history of the sites one has visited on the Internet, and more.

THE INTERNET IS A PRIMARY SOURCE OF UNHEALTHY AND EVEN DEADLY EATING DISORDERS INFORMATION.

The previous example should alert parents to be concerned about the information their child may be getting from the Internet.

The parent should be aware of the likely places the child will receive dangerous information on how to lose weight.

Many parents are surprised to learn that there are Internet web sites and social networking communities, groups, and forums that support anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and associated disorders.

These parents are unaware that the Internet supports web sites, communities, groups and forums that espouse anorexia, bulimia and other eating disorders as a way of life.

The findings of a pilot study which was published in the Journal of Pediatrics investigated “the awareness and usage of pro–eating disorder web sites among adolescents with eating disorders and their parents, exploring associations with health and quality of life.

The conclusion of this pilot study was that pro–eating disorder site usage was prevalent among adolescents with eating disorders yet parents had little knowledge of this.

Usage may have a negative impact on quality of life and result in adolescents’ learning about and adopting disordered eating behaviors.”

PEDIATRICS Vol. 118 No. 6 December 2006, pp. e1635-e1643 (doi:10.1542/peds.2006-1133)

HOW PREVALENT ARE PRO EATING DISORDER LOCATIONS ON THE INTERNET?

A Google search will turn up countless web sites and internet locations where pro ana and pro mia information and lifestyles are discussed, deified and GLORIFIED.

These sites and communities are so prevalent on the Internet they even have their own definitions. For example the web site

About dot com defines: “Pro ana Definition: An abbreviated form of “pro-anorexia.”  A pro-ana web site is one which promotes anorexia nervosa as noble and beneficial. Pronunciation: PRO-AN-a Also Known As pro-anorexiaAlternate Spellings: pro ana. Common misspellings: pro-annaExamples: Since recovery from her anorexia was so difficult, Katie was very drawn to the pro-ana web site.

About dot com defines Pro Mia Definition: An abbreviation of “pro-bulimia,” a name applied to a philosophy that promotes bulimia as noble and desirable. Generally applied to certain web sites. Pronunciation: PRO-MEE-ahExamples: Noel decided that her bulimia was too important to her to give up; she started visiting pro-mia web sites.

ANAD’S DEFINITION OF PRO-ANA, PRO-MIA AND OTHER EATING DISORDER INTERNET SITES AND LOCATIONS

ANAD defines “Pro-ana, pro-mia and other sites and communities as online locations that share and dispense information to sufferers of eating disorders that glamorize eating disorders.

These sites and communities also share information and photos relating to the deification of  anorexia or bulimia, supporting those who are substituting on a few hundred calories a day, exhorting them to be strongly misusing over-the-counter and prescription drugs such as laxatives and diuretics,self harm, purging, use of intestinal parasites, and the use of triggering photos of anorexic individuals that are used for inspiration.

Detailed information on extreme diets that are as low as or lower than 400 calories a day. The creators of these web sites, or bogs, or forums, or groups encourage and support sufferers to continue these practices.

ANAD POSITION STATEMENT RELATIVE TO THE INTERNET

Anorexia kills. Despite this hard fact, frequently the corporations that host pro eating disorder sites and social networking communities will hide behind freedom of speech as an excuse for allowing pro ana and pro mia internet sites and communities to continue to exist.

ANAD believes there is no excuse for corporations to host and harbor online pro-ana, pro-mia and other pro-eating disorder locations.

ANAD believes these champions of misery to innocent children must be removed.

ANAD along with therapists, treatment centers, and eating disorder health care professionals everywhere all agree such information is at the very best unhealthy and at the very worst is deadly.

Vivian Hanson Meehan, D.Sc, and founder and president of ANAD writes “providing tips to anxiety ridden, prepubescent or pubescent individuals who want to adopt this lifestyle promotes life adjustment failures, shortened stature, osteoporosis, in female’s endangerment of the reproductive system, heart attacks and death.

Dr. Maria Rago, Eating Disorder Therapist, ANAD Board Member and parent, reviewed a social networking group that claims to be the largest pro anorexia community on the Internet.

Dr. Rago’s observations about the content of the “World’s Largest Pro-anorexia Community” provide some very key insights in establishing whether or not the questionable Internet location is pro ana or pro mia and a potential danger to impressionable adolescents. Here is what she had to say about the location.

“As a parent I am especially frightened of this site.

To imagine a young person coming across this site or pictures like this and being affected is an unnecessary danger.

We will need to work together to stop children and other vulnerable people from being exposed to this kind of propaganda. Viewing this site is disturbing, sad and frightening.

Anorexia and Bulimia are not fun ways to chat and get to know new people.  They are deadly illnesses rooted in depression, anxiety and starvation.  This site glamorizes and feeds into Anorexia and Bulimia Nervosa.

The site’s very purpose is to support and strengthen the desires to starve and purge.  It also serves to promote new information about ways to use more and more dangerous methods to lose weight and avoid eating.

Anorexics and Bulimics naturally compare to each other as part of the disease.  This site creates the opportunity to compare to more and more dangerous methods of weight loss and increase the drive and interest, and to increase the severity and frequency of eating disorder behaviors.

I would compare this site to a pro-suicide site which would give depressed and suicidal people methods to kill themselves and feed into a negative, depressed and hopeless view on life.”

Email from Dr. Maria Rago, Clinician and Therapist, Linden Oaks Hospital, IL

HOW TO IDENTIFY PRO-EATING DISORDER INTERNET LOCATIONS

Don’t be misled by claims the location’s purpose and content are to help or that those who are not anorexics should not enter.

If anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa are glamorized, treated as deities or lifestyles and support is given to sufferers to maintain this deadly lifestyle, then despite claims to the contrary, the online location’s purpose is not to help anyone.

Nor is it beneficial if the location provides increasingly dangerous methods to lose weight and avoid eating, the online location’s purpose is not to help anyone.

If there are disparaging comments about how individuals and/or organizations such as ANAD are wrong in condemning pro ana, pro mia or similar sites, the online location’s purpose is unlikely to be positive.

If you as a parent have bad feelings about the content and the information the online location provides its visitors then trust your instinct and question if the online location’s purpose is to actually help anyone.

If you aren’t sure, review ANAD’s list of signs of pro ana and pro mia Internet locations that contain information that can kill. Here is a more complete lists of tale tell indicators that the on-site location could be dangerous or deadly to your child.

Six Signs of Life Threatening Eating Disorder Internet Locations

1. Glamorize, reinforce, anorexia nervosa and associated disorders as desired lifestyles.

2. Focus on weights that are below the generally accepted standards of the medical profession body mass index (BMI).

3. Provide instructions on how to obtain weight reduction goals through the explanation of diets that are so low in calories these diets are far under accepted standards of nutritionists and health officials.

4. Reinforce behaviors that help eating disorders sufferers to reach weigh reduction goals that are harmful and possibly deadly.

5. Provide information of the misuse of drugs in order to induce weight loss through vomiting or bowel movements.

6. Use photos or videos of celebrities, fashion models, or other individuals as roll models who are identified as anorexia.

WHAT PARENTS CAN DO AT HOME TO PROTECT THEIR CHILDREN FROM THE ODIOUS EATING DISORDER SITES

Most Internet guidelines for parents about internet safety are written from the point of view of protecting the child from pornography or child predators.

Some of the general guidelines make equally good sense for protecting children from pro eating disorder sites. These suggestions include:

1.  Purchase good software monitoring.  According to web monitoring software reviews dot org some of the features and benefits of child monitoring software include:
A.     For effective monitoring make sure the  program lets  you to see all web pages visited, read, sent and received email, and see both sides of IM chats conversations of your child (children)
B.     Remote web access that allows you to keep an eye on things from anywhere.
(Imagine keeping an eye on the kids’ Internet activity from your office for instance.)     C.     Be able to see what your child does when they think no one’s looking, you need a program that’s completely invisible
D.     Other features to look for are ability to block, the ability to filter data, and the ability to take screenshots.

2.      Keep your child’s computer in a public room of your home so you can indiscreetly monitor activities when you pass by the computer work station.

3.      Set age appropriate rules and guidelines for computer use with your child.         A.     Discuss these rules with children and put a copy near the computer as a reminder.
B.    A child or teenager’s excessive use of online services or bulletin boards, especially late at night, may be a clue that there might be a hidden problem.

4.      Don’t be afraid to learn more about the interests of the people with whom your child is chatting.

5.
http://www.monitoringsoftwarereviews.org/?e=1&kw=monitoring+child+internet&s_kwcid=monitoring%20child%20internet|596465615&gclid=CMP4v

THE HARD COLD STATISTICS

Unfortunately, too many people still believe anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa pose little threat and are primarily conditions that white middle class girls suffer.

The truth is eating disorders know no socio-economic or ethnic or national borders.

The facts are eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness and the mortality rate associated with anorexia nervosa is 12 times higher than for all causes of death for females 15-24 years of age.

Eighty six percent of sufferers report the onset of illness by the age of 20. This is the demographic that goes to the Internet for information and to socialize.

Once a sufferer has an eating disorder, she/he only has a fifty percent chance of being cured.

Those that are cured report suffering from their eating disorder from one to fifteen years, and it is estimated that between five and six percent of serious cases die.

DURATION OF ILLNESS/MORTALITY: –

77% report duration from one to fifteen years –

30% report duration from one to five years –

31% report duration from six to ten years –

16% report duration from eleven to fifteen years –

It is estimated that between five and six percent of serious cases die.

Only 50% report being cured

http://www.state.sc.us/dmh/anorexia/statistics.htm

COST TO SUFFERERS AND THEIR FAMILIES

Treatment for anorexia nervosa and/or bulimia is often extremely expensive. For example cost of inpatient treatment can be $30,000 or more a month, and the cost of out patient treatment, including therapy and medical monitoring can be as much as $100,000 a year.

In addition there are the thousands of dollars a sufferer and/or her/his family may lose from lost time at work, the cost of transportation, and other related costs.

The mental hardship and anguish to the sufferer and friends and family are incalculable. Marriages are destroyed by eating disorders and families are damaged in ways that are irreparable.

HOW PARENTS CAN FIGHT THE PROLIFERATION OF ON-SITE PRO EATING DISORDER LOCATIONS

Join ANAD and make your voice count. Enlist as an ANAD Internet Militia Member. Help us raise the alarm and to….

Fight to get responsible corporations to police the pro ana and pro mia web sites, social networking communities, blogs, and forums.

Draw attention to those corporations who disregard the safety of your children by continuing to harbor online pro eating disorder locations.
Send emails to those corporations announcing your displeasure.

Send emails to the sponsors and to the advertisers found at those locations.

All rights reserved, Copyright 2008 by ANAD (The National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders)

Distractions And Staying Balanced

George Bush, Barack Obama, Donald Rumsfeld,Dick Cheney, Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Rahn Emanuel, Rush Limbaugh,  Larry King, Hilary Clinton, World Net Daily, Fox News, CNN, 24, The Academy Awards, The Super Bowl, Rachel Ray, Netflix, etc.

There is a subtle trap that is out there that can work against us as we fight the battle of mental illness.  The list above is a very small sample of the different things that can derail or slow down our recovery or progress from a mental illness.

In and of themselves the list above is not representative of some great evil in our midst. What the names and other things represent are things that we can use to escape the pain in fighting a mental illness.  Our goal is to try and not fall into the trap of using distractions to escape from our lives.

Speaking from personal experience all of the above and so much more can become an escape for us as the pain inour lives becomes so difficult to deal with.  We can become involved in the political discussion which is an important thing.  We can be sports fans and enjoy watching our favorite teams compete.  Or we can relax and veg out and watch a good movie or show(s) on television.

As a young boy I enjoyed a game called Tip-It. If you’re old enough to remember the 60’s then you might recall this game.  It was a game of balance and a lot of fun.  Amazon.com describes it as an exciting game of steady nerves and perfect balance.

I was out of balance quite a bit through the years when Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia became a part of my life.  I was attending church, working, and appeared fine to most people.  Yet I was doing so much to escape the pain of my circumstances.  What this did was keep me from facing things that I’d rather not have faced and the result was a worsening and prolonging of my inner pain and despair.

Not surprisingly I found myself pretty depressed.  I was holding so much in and not facing up to my life as it was I fell into a tailspin.  I still remember the day when it came to a head for me.  I was in my office that I shared with a dear Christian woman and as I was talking with her I began sobbing uncontrollably.

My pain was pouring out of me and I realized that I was in no shape to work.  That was the beginning of my darkest times to that point which led me to having to leave my job and ending up on Social Security.

Prior to this taking place my job performance was slowly going down the tubes.  Being in sales I was in control of what I did each day.  The higher ups were interested in results.  I was a top sales person for years and was voted sales person of the decade nationally, for the 90’s so I was allowed a lot of slack.

What nobody knew was why my results were slipping.  Being in an office complex there were always vacant offices with the doors unlocked.  I would go upstairs and sit in an empty office for long stretches of time.  Other times I would drive to a park or cemetery,  park my car and go to sleep.  More often than not I’d end up home by one or two P.M.  No wonder I crashed and burned.

I had thought I was beyond the point of no return.  My thinking had gotten so mixed up I honestly believed God “couldn’t” help me.  For some reason I believed I had done something that prevented God from helping me.  And since I didn’t know what that was I figured I was “dirty” in some way.

For me, arriving at that point didn’t take place in a vacuum.  My life was totally out of balance as I found “harmless” distractions to get my mind off of things.  I think I must have written the book on how not to respond to mental illness!

In describing my experiences in no way am I saying to folks who are hurting deeply that they are guilty of a single thing.  I could look back and beat myself up for what a jerk I thought I was.  The reality was I was sick and didn’t know how to get better and any truth I came across I believed wasn’t for me.

So some might ask, “what’s your secret, Allan?”  I wish I had one I could pass out to all of you to make things better but I don’t.  I’m still limited in what I can do but my attitude has changed.  The self loathing and hopelessness will still pay me a visit but it’s soooo much better than it was.  I have accepted my life for what it is right now and am grateful for the progress I have made this last 18 months or so.  I mess up royally all the time but who doesn’t?

I write this to hopefully be a warning to all of us.  I will use an illustration I heard soon after being saved to try and illustrate what I’m seeking to share.  A story was told about a man in a boat relaxing and floating off shore.  Things are comfortable and he’s catching some rays and just soaking everything in.  Nothing seems amiss.

The reality though is that the boat he in has been moving slowly in a way he wasn’t aware of and when he gets up to head back to shore he realizes he is nowhere near where he should be.  This was shared to describe how a Christian can very slowly begin to backslide in their Christian walk.  It can happen slowly over time and we don’t realize it’s happening at all.

Using that same analogy what I’m try to communicate is the potential danger for all of us who are in the midst of a battle with a mental illness.  We very slowly get out of balance and when we look to see where we are we realize other things have led us off course.  We weren’t looking for the results to be as they are but they showed up without us ever realizing a thing.  Using distractions as an escape can be a way to lose our balance.

The good news is it’s never to late to get back on course. It can also serve as a warning about something to be aware of as you seek to get better.  Hopefully this might be something God might use for somebody reading this article to help you notice or to avoid this pitfall.

Our God is gracious and you are His.  Nothing will change that. Not even our feelings which so often deceive us. I pray none of us would be distracted to the point that we hinder our own recovery.  God bless.

Philippians 4:6  do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
Philippians  4:7  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Philippians  4:8  Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

Streams In The Desert- Degrees Of Faith

January, 25

Degrees of Faith

“Let me prove, I pray thee, but this once with the fleece” (Judges 6:39).

There are degrees to faith. At one stage of Christian experience we cannot believe unless we have some sign or some great manifestation of feeling. We feel our fleece, like Gideon, and if it is wet we are willing to trust God. This may be true faith, but it is imperfect. It always looks for feeling or some token besides the Word of God. It marks quite an advance in faith when we trust God without feelings. It is blessed to believe without having any emotion.There is a third stage of faith which even transcends that of Gideon and his fleece. The first phase of faith believes when there are favorable emotions, the second believes when there is the absence of feeling, but this third form of faith believes God and His Word when circumstances, emotions, appearances, people, and human reason all urge to the contrary. Paul exercised this faith in Acts 27:20, 25, “And when neither sun nor stars in many days appeared, and no small tempest lay on us, all hope that we should be saved was then taken away.” Notwithstanding all this Paul said, “Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer; for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me.”

May God give us faith to fully trust His Word though everything else witness the other way. –C. H. P.When is the time to trust? Is it when all is calm, When waves the victor’s palm, And life is one glad psalm Of joy and praise? Nay! but the time to trust Is when the waves beat high, When storm clouds fill the sky, And prayer is one long cry, O help and save!

When is the time to trust? Is it when friends are true? Is it when comforts woo, And in all we say and do We meet but praise? Nay! but the time to trust Is when we stand alone, And summer birds have flown, And every prop is gone, All else but God.What is the time to trust? Is it some future day, When you have tried your way, And learned to trust and pray By bitter woe? Nay! but the time to trust Is in this moment’s need, Poor, broken, bruised reed! Poor, troubled soul, make speed To trust thy God.

What is the time to trust? Is it when hopes beat high, When sunshine gilds the sky, And joy and ecstasy Fill all the heart? Nay! but the time to trust Is when our joy is fled, When sorrow bows the head, And all is cold and dead, All else but God. –Selected

Saturday Night Live- Praise & Worship

Play List

1.  How Can I keep From Singing?-  Enya

2.  Indescribable-  Chris Tomlin

3.  Freedom-  Jason Upton

4.  I Will Wait-  Jason Upton

5.  My Soul Longs For You-  Misty Edwards

6.  How Great Is Our God-  Misty Edwards

7.  I Will Trust-  Joanne Hogg, Kristyn Getty, and Margaret Becker.

8.  In Christ Alone-  Keith & Krisyn Getty

9.  So You Wanna Go Back To Egypt?-  Keith Green

10.  Gone Gonna Rise Again-  The Gordons

11.  Majesty(Here I Am)-  Delirious

12.  Rain Down-  Delirious

Prayer Requests & Praise Reports- January 23

Groanings which cannot be uttered are often prayers which cannot be refused. ~ Spurgeon

New Prayer Requests

Rachel-  hey all. please keep me in your prayers. i’m pretty sure i’m in a major depression and i am under a lot of attack. it’s easy when i’m not thinking clearly. struggling with thoughts of being a failure, worthlessness, not having enough faith, no one like me, etc. also some thoughts for a permanent ’solution’ that isn’t really a solution. i know i can’t/won’t do that, but i still think about it a lot.

Dorci-  Could I please ask for prayer for healing and/or wisdom on who to see for daily headaches I have had for almost 3 years? I have seen 3 neurologists, tried many medications and have had many nerve blocks and nothing has helped.

Thank you so much.

Past Prayer Requests

Anne-  Wow, Nene! I am blown away. And greatly encouraged! My need to move has as much to do with broken family issues as my unemployment. The family issues date back over 30 years and it seemed there had been healing over the last 8 I was back in OC, but they have resurfaced with a literal vengence -(

So now, it is official. Barring any unforeseen circumstances I will be moving to Beaverton, OR around March/April depending on how long it takes me to sell or give away whatever won’t fit in my car and tie up some other loose ends.

Covet your prayers as although I am glad I have family to go to now that I am unemployed, (my brother and his wife), it will be hard being farther away from my kids and grandkids . However it will be a blessing to be out of my current situation and out from behind the Orange Curtain.

I especially need prayer regarding my depression and general anxiety disorder. Although in the long run this move will probably be therapeutic in removing me from a very painful and awkward situation, I need strength and a clear mind to do all the things necessary for the move.

Thank you all, but especially Allan for making this space available.

Erunner-  Our daughter just called asking for prayer for her boyfriend’s father. He is undergoing open heart surgery which has taken everyone by surprise. Thank you for praying.  UPDATE-  He seems to have tolerated the surgery well as they replaced a heart valve.

a mom- I have a child diagnosed with PTSD after being molested and this article will be very helpful.
The 3 points were excellent and I will make a copy for her to keep with her.
God bless you

Erunner- Cara is a friend I met recently on a blog for people with Diabetes. She suffers with Mental Illnesses and tried to take her own life thirteen years ago. She ended up in a coma and as a result has minor brain damage from having flat lined twice.

“Plus the mental illness, plus all the physical illness. I have not worked for 12 years and I’ve lived in a AFH for 9 years as a cannot take care of myself.”

Please pray for Cara that God would work out His perfect will in her life and that she would know the peace He can provide during difficult times.

Dusty- Continued prayer for deep depression.

Erunner- The wife of our nephew has MS as I have shared in the past. This week they found another lesion on her brain. Please continue to pray.

Erunner- Please keep Jessica in your prayers. She is struggling with depression.

Okie Preacher- Please see my blog (okiepreacher.blogspot.com) for the latest update on Carolyn.

briwd200g- two things:

1. I have a job, and doesn’t look like we’ll get laid off anytime soon; so you can change that in the prayer list. But, it’s something that potentially could go down some day, and I need to prepare myself AHEAD of time.

2. I also need a second job (okay, that’s THREE things) )

kept-by-the-King- Thank you so much for praying, my brother sends me bizarre text messages about every other day…. he is so tormented….please pray for conversations I can have with him and that he would get the specific help he needs. Right now he is in a drug/alcohol rehab center …..

Linnea- Would you all pray for my friend, Rebecca, who is ending her marriage. Her 16 year old son has been diagnosed with primary pulmonary hypertension and she has a genetic predisposition for schizophrenia. Please pray that she get the help she needs, that her son be made whole and that their marriage be healed.

Anne – To overcome the “ feeling like it is my lack of faith or not being the “right” kind of Christian or believer that prevents my having “victory” or even immunity from depression. I also struggle with maintaining prayer when in the deepest parts of depression and grief.”

Nene - Prayer for her father to be saved and to come to a place of peace. Father and brother have been estranged 27 years.

Cash- Hello, friends. I am not doing well at all. Please pray for me and my family. Thanks.

Maryellen – Please pray for my daughter Jennifer and her daughter Avery, who was born with Down’s Syndrome. Strengthen the family as they enter into therapy for Avery that is very demanding. Pray also for their 2 and a half year old son during this time. Pray that the family will not be overwhelmed and that God will strengthen and guide them.

New Praise Reports

Nene-  Erunner, this is a HUGE praise. I asked for prayer here regarding my brother and dad. They have not spoken in 27 years or more, I lost count. It became a non issue, and one complete silence.

Today, my mom told me on the phone that my brother prayed for my dad last night at dinner. Besides this being so off the charts, my mom never even says his name. She also told me to tell my dad they love him.

Erunner!, I am stunned as the hand of God is covering this situation. With ll of my heart, whoever prayed for this situation, thank you, thank you.

I am in need of prayer as I haven’t told my dad yet. It is more than overwhelming to me. I am being honest….
Help me God with this.

Erunner-  Long but ultimately a blessed day today. My wife is home now and she’ll need a few days to recover. They isolated what type infection she had, gave her a last round IV of anti-biotics and sent us on our way.

Our daughter took my mother to her appointment today for her heart.  Her news was great. They believe her heart is just fine and told her she didn’t need to limit fluid intake as she had been told. It seems the pneumonia was the main problem and she is free to be as active as she wants. She is very, very, happy.

Two scary events that God allowed to turn out in a good way. Thanks for your prayers and my prayer is every need here would see God intervene over and above your expectations. God bless! Allan

Past Praise Reports

Mr Jesus Freak 4 Real-  Thanking God for the work He has done in the life of his wife who has suffered tremendously for several years.

Note….. As I compile this list I am eliminating those requests or praise reports that have been answered. I am also shortening the requests that are not new while trying to keep the essence of the request intact.

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